Some Gaston Co. voters say they were told they already voted

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GASTON COUNTY, N.C. - Some voters contacted Channel 9 when they went to vote and said they were told they already had.

Eyewitness News reporter Ken Lemon went to the Gaston County Board of Elections for answers.

“I feel like I was robbed,” voter Chandra Rogers said.

Rogers said she has been a registered voter at the same precinct, Tryon Elementary School, for the past 15 years. But she got quite a surprise when she went to vote on Tuesday.

“She spit out a piece of paper that said I voted already.  And I said, ‘No, I have not voted,’” Rogers said.

She said poll workers consulted with each other, called headquarters and once again told her she had already voted.

“You hear about things like this on television, but not think that's going to happen to you,” Rogers said.

She said the same thing happened to seven other people in line behind her. All of them filled out provisional ballots.

Their vote won't count until elections officials investigate and determine they are registered voters.

“I want my vote to count today,” Rogers said. “I want to be able to see my numbers on TV today, not later on.”

The elections director said the problem was caused by an error in the computer system. It gave poll workers the wrong reading on the voter's authorization forms.

“The voter takes that form, they sign it and then they are given a regular ballot,” said Elections Director Adam Ragan.

He said without that form, you cannot get a ballot that will count immediately.

“To protect the integrity of the election, we just like to do the research,” Ragan said.

He said once workers quickly realized the problem, it took 15 minutes to correct, but it will take 10 days before election workers can verify and count the provisional ballots.

“I'm just upset about it,” Rogers said.

The elections director said they have not had this problem in any other precincts.

Elections officials said at every polling location, your rights as a voter are clearly displayed.  That includes information about what to do or who to contact if you think those rights have been compromised.